Student Employment

Immigration law allows international students to work ON CAMPUS for BGSU up to 20 hours (maximum) per week when classes are in session.

Any work or service that graduate students perform as part of their assistantship counts toward the 20 hours per week limit. For example, if the assistantship requires 10 hours of service, you may work an additional 10 hours per week at another job on campus.

An F-1 student may accept employment at the institution he or she is authorized to attend without prior approval from USCIS. On-campus employment primarily means work performed on the school's premises. It includes employment with on-location commercial firms which provide services for students on campus, such as the school bookstore or cafeteria. It does not include employment on the school's premises for a commercial firm that is not providing on-campus services for students, for example, at a construction site for a new school building.

It may also include work at an off-campus location which is educationally affiliated with the school. In the case of off-campus locations, the educational affiliation must be associated with the school's established curriculum or related to contractually-funded project at the post-graduate level. On-campus employment is limited to 20 hours per week while school is in session. Such employment may be full-time during vacation periods for students who are eligible and intend to register for the subsequent academic term.

On-campus employment over the intervening summer is not permitted after completion of a course or courses of study (except employment authorized for practical training) unless the student has been issued a Form I-20 to begin a new program. If the new Form I-20 is from a different school, the student may engage in on-campus work on the campus of the new school, up to 30 days before classes begin.

Additional information about on-campus employment can be found on the Student Employment Services website and at the Student Career Center

Curricular Practical Training (CPT)

Curricular practical training is defined as an internship, cooperative education, or any other type of required internship or practicum, which is offered by sponsoring employers through cooperative agreements with the school. A student must have completed one academic year of full-time enrollment to be eligible to apply for CPT. Exceptions to this regulation are provided for students enrolled in graduate programs that require immediate participation in curricular training. If you participate in full-time curricular practical training for twelve (12) months or more, in total, you are not eligible for Optional Practical Training (OPT).

Optional Practical Training (OPT)

Optional Practical Training (OPT) is a program for F-1 students wishing to obtain work experience directly related to their course work with a U.S. employer.  Eligible students may work for up to one year and may apply for pre-degree completion OPT (before completing course requirements for your program) or post-completion OPT (after completing course requirements for graduation).

Severe Ecomonic Hardship

It is possible for F-1 students to work part-time off-campus due to economic hardship. This type of employment authorization is for F-1 students who have been in F-1 status for one full academic year, are in good academic standing, and have encountered severe, and documented, economic hardship since arriving in the United States. Employment authorized under this interim rule is limited to no more than twenty hours per week when school is in session and forty hours per week during holidays or school vacation. The employment is automatically terminated whenever the student fails to maintain status. This new rule also mandates that the student make a good faith effort to pursue employment on-campus. "Severe Economic Hardship" is defined as unforeseen economic circumstances beyond the students control; substantial fluctuation in the value of currency or exchange rates; inordinate increases in tuition and/or living costs; unexpected changes in the financial condition of the student's source of support; medical bills; or other substantial and unexpected expenses.

Internship with an International Organization

Regulations allows F-1 students to apply for an EAD in order to work in an internship with a recognized international organization within the meaning of the International Organization Immunities Act

Updated: 01/22/2024 01:47PM